An Entrance to Bizarro: Cassie-la Introduces “The Haunted Vagina” by Carlton Mellick III as a Gateway to a Cult Genre

The Haunted Vagina by Carlton Mellick III
Genre: Bizarro fiction, horror, absurdism, bat-shit crazy
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Summary: Two strangers meet on a train and fall in love. That is until Stacy tells Steve her vagina is haunted and their relationship takes a drastic turn.

After Steve is forced to kill a skeleton that crawls out of his lover’s vajayjay, Stacy decides to send him through the hellmouth, wherein he discovers that her vagina is a gateway to another dimension.

Armed with only a camera and a walkie talkie, Steve is forced to explore Stacy’s nether regions for the prosperity of their relationship, and the chance to delve deeper than any man has delved before.

Chances are if you saw the word “haunted” and “vagina” and were immediately intrigued, curious, or your interest was piqued in any way, Bizzaro fiction is the genre for you.

For those not yet inundated into the literary movement known as Bizarro, it was created ten years ago by small publishing presses and a strong group of devoted authors. It has been described by its creators as, “Franz Kafka meets John Waters”, “Dr. Suess of the post-apocalypse”, “Alice in Wonderland for adults”, and “Japanese animation directed by Stephen Lynch”. The stories always border on the bizarre (often crossing the line) and are generally written in novella rather than novel form.

The most populist example I can compare Bizarro literature to is the movie The Human Centipede: First Sequence which came out last year. To many, Bizarro can be viewed as an extremely weird premise, but with an underlying symbolic message. The aforementioned movie also has an extremely weird premise, but lacks an overall message. Whereas The Haunted Vagina has the theme of man being enslaved by the female vagina, the only message one can ascertain from “The Human Centipede” is to learn to properly change a tire and to never enter a crazy German man’s house alone. If you refuse to learn this lesson, you will inevitably wind up sewn ass to mouth to your best friend.

This is not to say that I put this gross-out movie and this novel (or the genre) on the same level, because the novel itself is vastly superior to this pointless horror film. I am merely trying to make a comparison to something “mainstream” and something “underground”, and since they are both strange, incite a lot of conversation, and are enticing on a base human level, one can’t help but want to watch/read them. In this way, and this way alone, Bizarro and The Human Centipede seem to have some sort of symbiosis.

So… Now that everyone has a vague understanding of what Bizarro fiction is as a genre, we can look more deeply into the novella The Haunted Vagina.

The two main characters, Stacy and Steve, have a tumultuous relationship. Stacy is taller than Steve which is represented through her demanding personality. Steve, as the diminutive figure, is subject to her whims and must put up with her bossiness merely to stay with her. She claims that her haunted vagina turned others on before him, but it merely frightens Steve. Considering the Asian culture’s abundant use of women with penises and tentacle rape, Steve’s yellow fever culminating in his girlfriend having another dimension on the other side of her clitoris isn’t such a bad trade off.

Ultimately, he is forced to choose between leaving Stacy because of the haunted vagina she is so prideful of, or accepting it merely to assuage his male urges. As expected, according to the stigmas of the male gender, he chooses to think with his penis rather than his brain. It is also expected that Stacy has never ever been to a gynecologist, who would have surely written a thesis on her haunted coochie.

The only other visible character in the novella is the humanoid known as Fig. Originally thought to be Stacy’s imaginary friend from childhood who would appear out of her vagina to entertain her, and later as a ghost girl, she is eventually referred to as a latex creature. Steve dubs her this because she appears to be made out of white latex (with a red stomach, hands, and feet), is hairless, and has rubbery looking elongated ears on her head (see book cover above). Fig is a simple minded creature whose idea of “dinner” is making arts and crafts and enslaving Steve for her own enjoyment. This also cements the idea of men being slaves to the female vagina, represented by Steve’s inability to escape, despite his seeming desire to do so.

As with most novellas in the Bizarro genre, The Haunted Vagina only took me an hour or two to read, but several days worth of time to fully digest. Everything about this genre is strange and fun and absurd and hard to put down. And that’s just the way I like my literature.

THE GOOD:
-Characters are quirky and memorable
-Alternate dimension is well fleshed out and also memorable
-The latex creatures are a vision of genius
-Author explores how we as a species are slaves to our sexual needs

THE BAD:
-Because of the short nature of Bizarro literature, it is difficult to get extremely well developed characters

For people just getting into Bizarro literature, I highly recommend you start off with The Haunted Vagina, which is a fun, easy entrance into the genre, and The Bizarro Starter Kit: Orange, The Bizarro Starter Kit: Blue, or The Bizarro Starter Kit: Purple which are anthologies that welcome people to Bizarro.

Coincidentally, The Bizarro Starter Kit: Orange has two of my favourite Bizarro stories, The Baby Jesus Butt Plug by Carlton Mellick III (a dystopic novella in which historical figures are cloned and used as sex toys) and Suicide Girls in the Afterlife by Gina Ranalli (in which the afterlife is a hotel, with hell being run by goth kid Satan and heaven by hippy God).

To learn EVEN MORE, definitely accurate information about Bizzaro fiction, visit the website for the genre: Bizarro Central.

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19 thoughts on “An Entrance to Bizarro: Cassie-la Introduces “The Haunted Vagina” by Carlton Mellick III as a Gateway to a Cult Genre

  1. I am curious enough to read through a review of a book titled “The Haunted Vagina” although, against the claims of your opening paragraph, I don’t think I’m curious enough to actually read through a whole book about it…

    Also, as a male, I have to say that the overall theme and message of this book is…

    … Well, it’s pretty spot on. We’re a depressing gender aren’t we.

    I do have to ask though; How does “HELP A Bear is Eating Me!” end?

    • It’s not a WHOLE book, it’s only about an hour or two worth of reading. Owning it is fun, because people can ask to borrow my “Haunted Vagina”.

      I would say each gender has its own depressing features. Women are extremely catty. This makes me as sad as your gender’s reliance on sex does, each facet of which is maddening in its own way.

      I didn’t read that one. Some of my recommendations were stuff I personally read, and some were ones I heard good things about. Judging by the genre though, I’d say he probably got eaten.

  2. I have yet to read anything from the bizarro genre, but I have always applauded anyone with the irreverence and audacity to publish things titled “The Baby Jesus Butt Plug.”

    This title made me think of those awful Vagisil commercials in which women look into a reflective surface and see the grim reaper version of themselves. Maybe instead of feminine itch, they really have a haunted vajayjay!

    • Ah, “The Baby Jesus Butt Plug”, which doubles as scaring away the extremely religious when the inexplicably start following you on twitter.

      I would PAY to see that commercial fully realised. “Mom, what do you do when you get that dry feeling down there and ghosts start talking to you from inside your coochie?” If I were rich, I would pay to run that commercial during the Super Bowl.

  3. This post was extremely enlightening, I’ve been wondering about “The Haunted Vagina” for a while. I may just borrow it, but I’m not sure about some of the other books on your list. Definitely not planning to read “The Baby Jesus Butt Plug.” I’m not offended because it’s Jesus, I’m offended because it’s a baby. I would not be less offended if it was baby random-person or baby Hitler, lol.

    • You have to ask to borrow it in a really awkward way. For example, “Would you mind fetching me ‘The Haunted Vagina’?” Then and only then will you be allowed to borrow it.

      What if it was baby Hitler, but adult Hitler has been transported into it’s body and it had all the thoughts and prejudices of grown-up Hitler.

      Also, the butt plug has to be a baby, otherwise it can’t fit in your butt. A full sized Jesus can’t fit in your butt! Besides, “Jesus Butt Plug” just doesn’t sound like that fun of a title.

      • I realize the mechanics, I’m just not going to read it. Even if it is adult Hitler trapped in a baby’s body. Although that is a very creative idea.

        Might I have a look at your Haunted Vagina?

  4. I should get in on this. It’s weird. I like it. Maybe not The Haunted Vagina, but some of those other titles you described at the bottom sound really cool. Thanks for the introduction to this bizarro nonsense.

    And way to gain a cool facebook friend! lol

  5. […] The Haunted Vagina by Carlton Mellick III Genre: Bizarro fiction, horror, absurdism, bat-shit crazy Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars Summary: Two strangers meet on a train and fall in love. That is until Stacy tells Steve her vagina is haunted and their relationship takes a drastic turn. After Steve is forced to kill a skeleton that crawls out of his lover's vajayjay, Stacy decides to send him through the hellmouth, wherein he discovers that her vagina … Read More […]

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